Fans are used to the wait in between books. The first five books were spaced three, four, five and six years apart. After A Dance With Dragons hit bookshelves in 2011, the worst estimates were for a seven-year gap. Eight years have now passed and it is looking certain a ninth will, too, before The Winds of Winter arrives. The author has practically guaranteed he will have it delivered well before Worldcon New Zealand in July 2020. But this weekend is Worldcon 2019, taking place in Ireland – and George RR Martin is making a very special appearance.
Fan interest remains high after the end of the HBO adaptation because fans know Martin has some different storylines in store for certain characters.
Martin is listed on the main website for Worldcon in Dublin, but there are no scheduled individual events involving the author.
However, he is also the guest of honour at a special screening of the classic sci-fi film Forbidden Planet, which is affiliated with the main convention. Unsurprisingly tickets sold out immediately. There will be a Q&A session afterwards, but what will Martin reveal?
Similar events for the movie and TV industries like San Diego ComicCon or Star wars Celebration are traditionally used to unveil new releases.
The official working for the screening makes it very clear.
It says: “Following the screening, George R.R. Martin will be in conversation with Maura McHugh of Dublin 2019: An Irish WorldCon about Forbidden Planet and the influence such works have had on his own writing and career.
“We regret that George R.R. Martin will NOT sign merchandise on the evening, nor will he be able to take questions about the A Song of Ice and Fire novels or the Game of Thrones television series.”
However, the author has revealed the release order for his next few books.
At a fan Q&A in London last week, Martin revealed he is focussed on finishing The Winds of Winter next year, before taking a break from the main saga for the fourth Dunk and Egg novella.
He will then start working on the final volume of A Song of Ice and Fire, A Dream of Spring, followed by another fifth Dunk and Egg story. After that, he will return to complete Fire and Blood’s second volume.